Little American flags clutched in fists and campaign signs at the ready for the moment when they would be hoisted high into the air; “Make America Great Again” caps riding the brows of dozens and red, white and blue splashed across the attire of the crowd; a political fervor electrifying the atmosphere; the signs appeared auspicious for a final push in the Pahrump Valley to turn out Republican voters this general election.
The Nevada Republican Party’s “Get Out The Vote” rally took place on the final day of early voting, November 2, bringing political hopefuls and well-known faces to town in an effort to inspire residents to exercise their right to head to the polls.
Calling for a “red wave” to engulf the Silver State, Donald Trump Jr. and former Fox News host Kimberly Guilfoyle touted their support of local Republican candidates, including event headliners Adam Laxalt, who is seeking the seat of Nevada governor, and U.S. Congressional District 4 nominee Cresent Hardy.
The Grand Old Party turnout for the rally was well into the hundreds, the venue packed with Republicans all brimming with passion for the election process and the candidates they were backing. Nye County Republican Central Committee Chairman Joe Burdzinski said the rally was a big success, igniting an even more fiery motivation in the already zealous local GOP base.
“Pahrump Republicans had the supreme experience of listening and interacting with President Trump’s son in person this past Friday, along with congressional candidate Cresent Hardy and gubernatorial candidate Adam Laxalt, and Don. Jr.’s lovely girlfriend Kimberly Guilfoyle,” Burdzinski stated of the event. “Don Trump Jr. and the other Republican candidates who took the stage encouraged all in attendance to vote Republican and make phone calls and write emails and offer rides to friends and relatives to get them to the polls this Election Day, Tuesday, Nov. 6.”
Nevada Republican Party Chairman Michael McDonald kicked off the rally, welcoming everyone with fond words. “I love coming here, you guys energize me… when you come here, you know you’re home because this is conservative country, this is Republican country and God bless all of you for being here today,” McDonald enthused before turning to a news story that obviously thrilled him.
“I saw nothing greater than to walk in here today and see Joe Burdzinski for the appointment to the Nevada Assembly,” McDonald said, holding a copy of that morning’s Pahrump Valley Times over his head, prompting cheers from the audience. “I think he’ll do a great job. I know he’s my pick, I know he’s going to be the president’s pick for this and he should be your pick too.”
While the overall message of “getting out the vote” was a predominant part of the rally, this naturally led to the opportunity to highlight the Republican platform and criticize the other side of the aisle, the Democrats.
Hardy came out swinging, putting a harsh spotlight on his Democratic opponent, Steven Horsford, before proceeding to enjoin Republicans to vote. “I want you to know that Cresent Hardy lives in this state and has for over 60 years… I don’t think you want someone who currently still has a home in… a posh suburb in Virginia, his oldest son just graduated from high school in Virginia, he’s been registered to vote for the last two rounds in Virginia and he didn’t change his driver’s license until two day before he registered to run against myself in CD4,” Hardy declared. “Is that who you want? I don’t believe so. So here is the thing… we need to have the energy and the ambition.”
Laxalt followed in the same vein, adding his own sparks to the fire burning in the hearts of GOP members.
“The choice is pretty stark in this race. We have two paths we are going to go for our great state. We can go the direction of my opponent who stands for more taxes. Do we want more taxes?” Laxalt asked, with the crowd yelling out the negative. “How about corruption? I am sure you hear all the stories… my opponent has a record of pay-to-play politics… Do we want to give this person more power? Do we want to give him a promotion?… If it’s possible to have a swamp in the middle of the desert, my opponent is a one-man swamp. So we cannot let that happen. What’s our other choice? Our other choice is to embrace what we love about this great state. We are a western, independent, libertarian-leaning state… We are going to keep taxes low, reduce regulations, fix education and we are going to make sure Nevada’s brightest days are yet to come.”
Wes Duncan, Republican nominee for Nevada attorney general, was invited for the rally as well and he too offered words for the attendees. “The other side, the other party, their slogan is resist. That’s not leadership, folks,” Duncan asserted to the concurrence of the crowd.
For Burdzinski, he said one particular moment stood out above the rest, a back and forth between the crowd and Trump Jr.
“Donald Trump Jr. asked an important question of his shoulder-to-shoulder audience of 400 supporters Friday, November 2 at the Pahrump Nugget here in Pahrump,” Burdzinski recalled with evident satisfaction. “Are you tired of winning?” Trump Jr. had quizzed the crowd. The response was a resounding, “No!” shouted at top volume.
“But my father said you would win so much, you’d get tired of winning,” Trump Jr. said. Once again attendees called out, “No!”
Trump Jr. continued, “Jobs? Tax reform? Economy? Border security? National diplomacy and negotiations? Draining the swamp? Not tired yet?” Hundreds of voices raised again to yell, “No!”
“Even if you feel like we’ve got this mid-term clinched, let’s run up the score,” Trump Jr. urged. “This election is critical.”
The final results of the 2018 general election were not fully counted as the Pahrump Valley Times went to press on election night, Nov. 6. Look for complete results in an upcoming edition.
Contact reporter Robin Hebrock at email@example.com